Remember I told you how judges can make the law and then change it to suit their whims. No better example of that is the recent case of Commonwealth v. Jimmy Warren decided by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC). They change the law so that blacks get special exemptions no other people get. How can that be in America?
The judges of the SJC do not have to live in some of the areas where the Boston Police work. None of them has ever driven a police cruiser at night attempting to track down some felons. Wait until you read what they say. I will set it out tomorrow. They apparently have no concern with endangering the black community by requiring police to think differently when it comes to blacks.
I’ll talk more about that tomorrow. The question today I am asking you to decide is whether the Boston Police had a reasonable suspicion for an investigatory stop to question two black men relative to a house break. This is one you can decide for yourself. The facts are simple. Reasonable suspicion is a much less standard than probable cause?
At 9:20 pm on DEcember 18, 2011,Officer Anjos received a call of an ongoing breaking and entering on Hutchings Street where the suspects were fleeing the scene. He went to the scene and spoke to the victim. He was told the victim entered his bedroom and saw a black male wearing a red hoodie jump out the window. He went to the window and looked out and saw two other black males, one wearing a black hoodie and the other wearing dark clothing. They took his backpack, computer and five baseball hats. The victim saw them run to the end of Hutchings Street approximately which intersected with Harold Street. He did not know which way they went after that.
Anjos drove around the neighborhood in about a four or five block radius looking for the suspects. It was a cold night and no one was out on the streets. Not seeing anyone he decided to head back to the station. On his way at 9:40 pm about a mile away on Martin Luther King Boulevard (distance from Hutchings and Harold Street to Malcolm X park on MLK Blvd) he saw two black males walking along wearing dark clothing and one had a dark-colored hoodie. This was twenty minutes after the report of the break and a mile away.
He thought they might be involved in the break. He decided to stop to talk to them. Rolling down the window of his marked cruiser he yelled: “Hey guys, wait a minute.” They made eye contact with him and jogged away. Two other officers, Carr and Santosuosso observed them coming out of the park on the other side. They left their cruiser and approached the men as they left the park. Carr yelled out “Hey Fellas” One stopped. The other, Jimmy Warren took off running back up as hill back into the park. Officer Carr shouted for him to stop. He noticed Jimmy grab the right side of his pants consistent with what he said was someone carrying a pistol in his pocket. He gave chase and caught him. After subduing him a .22 caliber firearm was found in the yard where they were standing. Jimmy was charged with having the firearm.
Now the SJC said the officers had no right to do what they did. What do you think? Perhaps Jimmy can now sue the officers for false arrest.
If you were a Boston cop what would you have done differently? Should Officer Anjos have taken the information from the victim and said “if you don’t have a better description then you are wasting my time.” Or should he have just taken the information and gone for a cup of coffee at the local donut shop, after all it was a cold night. What about Officers Carr and Santosuosso? Should they have stayed in their warm cruiser and not bothered?
I’ll tell you if I were one of them after reading the SJC decision I’d never stop another black person. These guys are out there putting their lives on the line to protect the residents of all communities. Now the SJC has said blacks are not to be judged the way others are judged. If a white, Asian or Latino takes off and runs when a cop wants to question him the cop can infer he might have done something wrong. When a black runs, the cop has to infer that the cop did something wrong.
You know where this leads to. Think of Chicago. When you step over cops who are doing a good job they’re going to figure why bother. That will lead to more crime and murders in black neighborhoods.
That’s my opinion. Do you think the SJC is right? If so, tell we where the Boston Police did wrong.